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Old 09-01-2011, 03:35 PM   #1
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DIY cave for a pair of boliavan rams

Hi guys I was looking through other cave threads for ideas. I've seen gravel covered pvc pipe, coconut shells and structures built from slate chipping. All agree on aquarium safe silicone (arrived in the post today)

I was wondering what would best suit the rams?
Would they like something to swim through like the PVC pipe or somewhere to hide like the coconut.

I'm thinking about using the slate for a more custom hardscape. I'm working on a few designs but I want it to suit the bolivian rams and also look good it the tank.

I want to get started this weekend as I'm hoping to pick up the rams in about 3 weeks.
I will take pictures as I go along.

Any advice would be great as this is my 1st real DIY project like this..
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Old 09-03-2011, 01:06 AM   #2
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Good luck man, very interested. You could go with both, lol Rams are territorial, so 1 will claim the different 'hiding' places. While a pvc might not seem like a good hiding spot, fish have fun with each other chasing around through them.

I had a castle in my 55 gal, the territorial one would play king of the hill! It had 3 openings, so the other fish would have a bit of fun sneaking up on him.
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Old 09-07-2011, 01:38 PM   #3
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I picked up the slate chippings today. Got loads more than i need though so maybe a new project in my other tank when I'm done. Now to start cleaning them up..
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Old 09-16-2011, 07:25 PM   #4
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So I finally made a start on the hardscape. I've washed the slate, 3 of these boxes (got loads left) pic is of progress so far. I'll get more done tomorrow
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Old 09-17-2011, 09:18 AM   #5
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Started on the next part, the cave
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Old 09-17-2011, 09:25 AM   #6
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It's much heavier than I expected so I'm gunna make 3 pieces instead of one large slate wall. Also I picked up another bag of sand to add around the slate when its in the tank. Should give it a more natural look.
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Old 09-17-2011, 10:06 PM   #7
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That's looking cool!
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Old 09-17-2011, 10:42 PM   #8
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Where did you buy the slate from good luck on the project
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Old 09-18-2011, 04:11 AM   #9
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Looks great so far, just a thought, if you have some sand you should put some on the exposed silicone while it's still wet so when it's done any silicone you would normally see is disguised as sand.
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Old 09-18-2011, 06:30 AM   #10
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I've finished the cave now, just waiting for the silicone to cure.

I picked up the slate at a garden center. A big 10kg bag (loads left over)

I did think about pushing sand in to the exposed silicone but instead I will trim any visible parts with a Sharp craft knife, most of it is hidden in shadow it really shows up in the photos due to the flash
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Old 09-18-2011, 08:01 AM   #11
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Looks great, and looks huge too, very impressive. Love DIY tank decor, always much more interesting and creative than shop brought stuff. Great job, can't wait to see how it looks in the tank.
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Old 09-18-2011, 08:22 AM   #12
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The cave is about 8 inches across and 5 inches high. I'm goin to make a start on the arch way today, it will join the 2 pieces together. Also it gives the fish something to swim through
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Old 09-19-2011, 03:26 AM   #13
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So this is how it should look when its in the tank
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Old 09-19-2011, 03:35 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by defiance
I picked up the slate chippings today. Got loads more than i need though so maybe a new project in my other tank when I'm done. Now to start cleaning them up..
Where did you get the slate chips from. I can't seem to find any at all

**EDIT** nevermind. I didn't fully read everything and got too excited
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Old 09-20-2011, 08:24 AM   #15
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So hopefully I will be putting everything in the tank this evening. The new slate hardscape should free up some driftwood that is already in there for my other tank. I'll post the pics when I'm done.
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Old 09-20-2011, 04:39 PM   #16
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I'm finished (for now) its all in the tank.
What do you think??
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Old 09-20-2011, 04:40 PM   #17
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I think it looks great. Good job!
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Old 09-20-2011, 04:46 PM   #18
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Looks good, great job
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Old 09-20-2011, 04:47 PM   #19
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Really nice, looks natural, and subtle, a proper little hidey hole, your rams will love it.
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Old 09-20-2011, 05:10 PM   #20
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Thank you guys.
The corys love the new lay out there is also a nice sized cave under the driftwood....

Just need to get the rams now.
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